Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Some notes about the Twitter portion of #pitchMAS AND some more peer critique!


In case some of you might want to have a little more pitch feedback from your peers--the workshop post is FULL of comments, yay!--go ahead and post them here for some extra PEER feedback before the Twitter pitch party on FRIDAY, 12/16! 


Twitter Party Details (READ THESE PLEASE):

  • We go live at 6:00 AM pacific time on 12/16/16, and the pitching will continue all day long, with a tentative stop time of 6pm, pst. We say tentative because we don't tell the agents and editors on the feed when they can stop requesting. A good rule of thumb: keep an eye on the pitchMAS feed; if people are still requesting, you should still be pitching. The agents/editors will respond to the pitches they want to request. IF an agent or editor does not respond, but favorites your pitch instead, please view their feed to see if they've mentioned what they want from starred pitches, OR ASK ONE OF US FOR HELP.


  • NEVER NEVER NEVER pitch directly to an agent or editor UNLESS THEY HAVE ASKED. 
Please follow this simple rule . . . at all times, not just during pitch events.

  • If you do not get through to the Top 50, and even if you do, please join us for the Twitter Pitch Party! ANYONE can participate, regardless of the Top50 results!!!
  • BUT, your manuscript MUST BE COMPLETED AND POLISHED.
Did you read that? Go back and read it again. We'll wait. *whistles*

Completed and polished. Please, please, please do not pitch a bare-bones idea/concept or a half-written manuscript. No one will sign that, and they'll just be disappointed when they request pages that don't exist. This makes us sad. 
And, apologies, but this must be said: Chances are, if you just wrote this manuscript for NaNoWriMo, IT IS NOT READY. We know that sounds harsh, but it is the hard truth 99.9% of the time. Get some experienced eyes on your manuscript (crit partners, beta readers), then pitch/query. And unless your mom is an experienced writer or editor, her eyes probably don't count--moms can be biased. ;-) 

  • Twitter pitches MUST BE 140 Characters or Less, and they HAVE TO INCLUDE THE HASHTAG. Don't make the agents and editors work to read what you're pitching because you've broken your pitch into more than one tweet. Don't make them follow a link. Just, NO. (That will just annoy them, irritate your fellow pitchers, and ensure that your pitch gets lost among the others.)
*On this note, we highly suggest avoiding anything that may appear gimmicky
(like artwork and images). 
  • Please keep your Twitter pitching to no more than TWO PITCHES PER HOUR, per manuscript. Do not fill up the feed with your pitch over and over again. This, too, will annoy the agents and editors involved, as well as ruining it for everyone else--which I know you don't really want to do, do you? (Plus, people WILL remember you for it.)

Twitter pitch parties are a LOT of fun--trust us, we've both done many as hosts and pitchers--but please don't get carried away. TWO PITCHES PER HOUR PER MANUSCRIPT is plenty, and doesn't bog down the feed.

Please respect us, the agents and editors participating, and your fellow writers by following these rules.

You are welcome to pitch more than one manuscript, but please only pitch EACH manuscript no more than TWICE per hour.

Follow along with the hashtag: #PitchMAS

60 comments:

  1. Tricked by him into marrying another man to further his agenda, now, as CFO of a cartel, Lilah must save him from assassins #pitchMAS #A #T

    Harry has never forgotten Lilah, the lover he betrayed to further his agenda. Now, only she can save him from assassins. #pitchMAS #A #T

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The first confused me first read. I think it needs to be simplified.
      Tricked into marrying a cartel CFO, Lilah …
      But why not just let them kill him? She was tricked after all. The why is missing.

      After reading the second one, I don't think I understand what is going on.

      Delete
    2. How about this ?

      Lilah Kingsley, CFO of an oil cartel, has to save from assasins the lover who betrayed her for a political agenda. #pitchMAS #A #T

      Delete
    3. Ah, I get it now. :) Much better. The sentence is a wee awkward though. Cut the last name, not needed for pitch and it will give you more wiggle room. I think assassins is misspelled.

      IDEA
      Lilah, oil cartel CFO, must save the lover who betrayed her from assassins or risk WHAT. #pitchMAS #A #T

      OR

      Oil cartel CFO must save the lover who betrayed her from assassins or risk WHAT. #pitchMAS #A #T

      Good luck!

      Delete
  2. Dragon refuses his throne for 1/2 elven princess & her quest across the C to save her land from the Drenda creeping under it #EF #A

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you can sacrifice 'across the C' without losing the essence. Also maybe better if you specify what Drenda is, rather than the name.

      Delete
    2. The 1/2 elven princess confused me first read. For the pitch, I'd drop the 1/2 or say elven-dragon princess (or whatever). Spell out sea or people may think it stand for something, but as JP says it could be dropped. And definitely identify what a Drenda is. (Should Elven be capitalized?)

      Ex:
      Dragon refuses his throne for Elven princess & her quest to save her land from the poisonous root creatures creeping under it #EF #A

      Delete
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  4. #pitMas A malicious satyr is bent on raising hell. A broken demon and his human thwart him but release something more evil. #LGBT #UF #NA

    Thoughts and Comments appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd read it! But...

      The way it's written too much is about the satyr, I want to know what they are going to do now. For word count, I changed malicious to nasty. Once last thing, what do you mean by broken—UF, it could be literal.

      Idea (140)
      #pitMas Stoping a nasty satyr, a broken demon and his human accidently release something worse and now must FILLIN THE BLANK. #LGBT #UF #NA

      Delete
    2. And good luck!

      Delete
    3. Is it pitchmas or pitmas?

      Delete
    4. Good catch JP! It is indded pitchmas!

      Delete
    5. #pitchMas To stop a vile satyr, a wayward demon and his human accidentally release more evil to stop the Dark Lord's return. #LGBT #UF #NA

      Delete
    6. Suggestion

      ... more evil, then the Dark Lord returns

      Delete
  5. An interplanetary Miss Universe pageant trains contestants for galactic war. CINDER meets THE SELECTION. #YA #SF

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    Replies
    1. Yes, don't forget the #pitchmas. Can you add something to make it even more enticing, like a problem they face?

      Delete
    2. This sounds like a great idea, but there are no stakes and no main character. What's the conflict?

      Also, you can save a couple characters by doing: "CINDER X THE SELECTION" You don't need the full word 'meets.'

      Delete
  6. Girl finds tattoo on dead man to match her murdered mother's. Clues lead her to dangerous political intrigue. Trust no one. #pitchmas #ya #f

    Would love some feedback/thoughts!

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    Replies
    1. There doesn't appear to be enough here to really attract someone to it...I guess I'm having trouble with this girl finding a tattoo on a dead guy...how did she find him...who was he, how does this link to political intrigue
      ...I don't know what your novel is about but I'm thinking something like...

      Her murdered mother and the dead politician in the paper both have the same tattoo; finding out why could cost Sue her life #pitchmas #ya #f

      Delete
    2. I would agree with the above comment. 'Dangerous political intrigue' is too vague to give a reader an idea of what the book is about. Try to be as specific as possible with your pitch (which I understand is hard in 140 characters.)

      I would recommend trying to add in there why it's so important that your character discover the connection. What will happen if she doesn't? Does she have the tattoo, as well? Just some questions to provoke thoughts.

      Delete
    3. Thanks for your feedback - makes sense! How about this?

      16yo village dr finds tattoo on dead msgr to match her murdered mom's. Pursuing the clues could lead Tambryn to her death. #pitchmas #ya #f

      Delete
    4. Or this one? Which one is stronger, or what do you think still needs work? (This is so tough!)

      All she wants is to know why her mom was murdered. A tattoo holds devastating answers - was her mom a gov-opposing killer? #pitchmas #ya #f

      Delete
    5. Yes, it is quite tough. We all understand.

      As to the first one, is your MC a 16-year-old doctor? (or am I misunderstanding that?) And if pursuing the clues could leave to the MC's death, why would she pursue it?

      The 2nd one has too many words. You're losing space with: 'All she wants is to know' when you could say: 'She needs to know.' Also, there is a disconnect between the tattoo and her being a gov-opposing killer.

      And I'm sorry to keep finding tweaks. (I, too, have slaved over pitches for months. So, I know the struggle this is.)

      Delete
    6. No, this is great practice - thanks for your help.
      How about this?

      Dead man w/ threat 2 gov has tattoo matching her murdered mom's. Choices? Risk safety of all or drown in dark intrigue. #pitchmas #ya #f

      Dead man carries threat 2 gov & tattoo matching her murdered mom's. Choices? Risk safety of all or face mom's dark secrets. #pitchmas #ya #f

      Still a little iffy on both. What do you think?

      Delete
    7. Mm. Yeah, I'm not feeling either of those. I think the problem is you're trying to convey too much in one tweet. You do get a couple. So, perhaps try splitting up the ideas: tattoo and its implication in one, and perhaps the two of them having the same tattoo in another.

      I do still like anonymous's suggestion and you could utilize that framework with a few tweaks, if you want.

      "Her murdered mother and a dead man have the same tattoo; finding out why could cost MC her life #pitchmas #ya #f"

      Delete
  7. Name: Abbey Okubadejo
    Title: My Hurricane
    Category/Genre*: YA Contemporary Romance
    Manuscript Word Count: 84,270
    Pitch: Things like this don’t happen. Your friend doesn’t disappear, and you start a war with dangerous boys because of it. You don’t stab one, then fall in love with him either. But that’s Nakia’s Sophomore year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The pitch has more than 140 characters and there's no room for the hashtags.

      Delete
  8. Piper's stories were already magical, but now they come true. By trying to protect her secret, she might lose her family. #pitchMAS MG

    At first, Piper thinks it's an escaped prototype from biotech giant Prometheus, but when she touches it, her stories come true. #pitchMAS MG

    Piper's only trying to protect her discovery, but somehow she finds herself lying to the person she loves most. #pitchMAS MG Fantasy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm...maybe..

      Piper's discovery creates reality from her stories, protecting it comes at a price- her integrity and her family #Pitchmas #MG

      Delete
    2. The first one has two completely different, not connected points. You have the stories (i'm guessing she writes), and protecting her sister. I recommend trying to find a way to connect them. Are her stories the ones threatening her sister?

      I'm not sure about the 2nd one. It doesn't give us any stakes. What does she want? What's stopping her from getting it?

      Delete
    3. Thanks for the feedback! The secret is that her stories come true (and why they come true), but you're right, that connection isn't explicit. I also agree with you on the stakes front with the second one. Is it more clear here?

      Piper's stories were already magical, and now they come true. But now she has to choose between her magic and her family. #pitchMAS

      Delete
    4. Mm. This is much better. I like the stakes you added: family or magic.

      Though, I'm going to ask a bit of a harsh question: is it only Piper who thinks her stories are magical (before the magic) or others, as well? I'm thinking we're lacking the importance of her stories coming true because who would pick magical stories over their family?

      Perhaps I'm asking for too much in a Twitter pitch, but I just want to offer up a few more things to think about. You do get multiple pitches, too. So perhaps you can give each one a little bit different focus depending on what you're trying to achieve and share with the readers.

      Delete
  9. Suicide on a stormy 1906 Philadelphia night turns to murder as the blind son of a judicial luminary is asked to investigate #Pitchmas #A #M

    When suicide becomes murder, blind Broderick Dumont must tread softly lest his investigation become a witch hunt #Pitchmas #A #M

    What begins as a kindness to his mother’s friend turns to murder when blind Broderick Dumont investigates a suicide #Pitchmas #A #M

    Battling demons of guilt and glass, a blind Philadelphia bon vivant looks into a young girl’s suicide only to find murder #Pitchmas #A #M

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  11. Dad thinks blinking lights on utility tower = code from beyond. Daughter struggles to pick up his pieces. Model-turned-secretary her only ally, or enemy? #PitchMAS

    Would really appreciate feedback/thoughts on this pitch! Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What I infer: Daughter believes her father has 'gone 'round the bend' and has delusional belief in (aliens, God, or other) and must assume the tole of adult. She is befriended by a woman who may have ulterior motives

      Delete
    2. Daughter struggling with HIS pieces is confusing. I don't get what the friend has to do with dad's problems or how it helps or hinders her. It seems like a seperate idea. You might do better creating two seperate pitches, one with each theme.

      Delete
    3. Thank you, this really helps!

      Delete
    4. Question: Who is the main character of your story? The father or the daughter? Given the specific details for the father, it would seem like he is the main character, but I get the feeling it's the daughter. I would offer her more emphasis in the pitch. Hope this helps!

      Delete
    5. Melanie, you are so right, she is the main character. Thank you for pointing out the emphasis issue.

      Delete
    6. Let's try this again:
      She’s losing her boyfriend, possibly her job, all so she can care for her estranged father, a doctor developing dementia. Going home never felt so strange #PitchMAS

      Delete
    7. Hmm... I definitely think it's better. However, I'm worried now about the tone. Because it gives this feeling like... she doesn't care for her father, that he's a burden in her life. Does this make sense? I'm not sure if you were going for that.

      Also, I'm a little curious: is her father still a practicing doctor? Or are you simply trying to elude to some irony behind a doctor developing dementia?

      Delete
    8. Melanie, you've made some awesome points, once again. You're really good at this!

      Another go:
      She’s losing her boyfriend, possibly her job. Small price for caring for her estranged dad, a doctor w/ dementia. She seeks to befriend him before losing him #PitchMAS

      Delete
    9. Haha! I'm not. Just have a lot of experience crafting pitches. :p

      Oo. I like this one. I would suggest 'hopes to befriend him' instead of 'seeks to befriend him'. It's a stronger, more emotional verb.

      And just one question for that one: Is she seeking to befriend him because they never had a relationship or is she seeking to reconcile a damaged relationship that they've ignored for many years?

      P.s. I hope you're checking character count with Twitter. I'd hate for you to have an awesome tweet, only to find out it's too long.

      P.p.s. Write a couple of tweets. You get 2 per hour! Use them.

      Delete
  12. Arrested for creating lightning she must evade surgeons & escape prison. Or they'll arrest, dissect & study her brother next
    #pitchMAS #YA

    She electrocuted her brother with her hands. To save him, she must embrace her lightning, & escape prison & the surgeons.
    #pitchMAS #YA

    Arrested for electrocuting her brother, she must escape prison to save him, control her lightning, & adjust to being deaf. #pitchMAS #YA

    Looking for any and all thoughts, please! ^.^ I will return the favor!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the first of the three - it really sets everything up and has a clear progression. "Arrested" is a strong start and immediately hooked me on the first read. The consequences are devastating; you have high stakes, for sure! Wish I could offer a critique, but personally I would love to read the story based on what you have here - it definitely has my interest!

      Delete
    2. I love this concept. Very creative. All three are great.

      Delete
    3. I'm back again. You've been such a help w/ my pitches. I wanted to give yours more thought. I still think all three are great. The only part I initially stumbled on was the idea of "creating lightning" maybe something like - "the gift of creating lightning" (in the 1st one), or something along those lines?

      Also, in the second one, I stumbled on the word "surgeons" - maybe scientists?

      In the last one, I was surprised about the detail of her being deaf. Perhaps bc it didn't come up in the first two. It just seems a bit out of place w/ escaping from prison and controlling her power.

      Delete
    4. Aw! Thanks, Cicely. ^.^ These are great pointers! I will take them under advisement as I continue writing my reserve pitches. (And I actually quite enjoy helping you craft yours. ^.^)

      The part about being deaf is an important part of the story, but not the focal point. However, it's important to have a variety of pitches. So, being deaf is definitely something to add in a couple of the pitches. (and it highlights what is unique about my MC.)

      Delete
    5. I think the last one is the most interesting, Melanie.

      Delete
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  17. 2 Salem witch decedents move in 1849 to Los Angeles start anew. But the past never dies and these siblings must decide to save their friend from a murder he did not commit or reveal their family secret.

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